This week's poll vote came down to: Alexandra Klos (left), who ran the U.S. No. 6 time in the 1600m, and Paige Sommers (right), who posted a CA record in the pole vault. (Credits: James Leash/Karen Ocskasy)
That time for the sophomore from Folsom Vista del Lago (SJ) would rank No. 1 in California and No. 6 in the United States for girls who were able to post marks during the abbreviated 2020 outdoor season.
Klos is a soccer player who was a breakout star in the fall during her first season running cross country -- winning the CIF-State Division II title, no less! In her first race on the track, she won by nearly half a minute.
Two and a half weeks before Klos took the line in Folsom, Westlake junior Paige Sommers said she woke up not feeling 100 percent but that belied what was about to take place in the pole vault at the Thousand Oaks Lancer Invitational.
There, on new poles and riding the adrenaline of the season's first outdoor meet, Sommers would go a foot over her previous PR and eclipse the previous CA State Record of 14-5.50 with a clearance of 14 feet 6!
Not only did it break the CA standard set by Rachel Baxter of Anaheim Canyon in 2017, Sommers became just the third girl in state history to clear 14 feet. Also, her mark ranked No. 4 all-time in U.S. prep history and set both class and age national records.
After clearing 14-6, Sommers took three attempts at breaking the national record of 14-8.
PAIGE SOMMERS ATTEMPTS AT 14 FEET
Sommers would get only one more chance to compete before the season was abruptly suspended and subsequently canceled, going 13-6 two weeks later at the Don Green Invitational.
The achievements by Klos and Sommers are just two of more than a dozen individual and team marks from California girls that rank top-10 nationally from the three-plus-week 2020 outdoor season.
This week's poll was designed to draw further attention to the collective level of excellence achieved by Golden State gals during such a brief opportunity for competition.
Initial voting favored Sommers in a runaway but then word apparently got out that Klos was in the mix and, like the amazing kick that we can only imagine from watching her run XC and can't wait to see on the track, she swept into the lead and won, receiving nearly 49 percent of votes.
We don't have the video of her 1600m but we do have highlights from when Klos won the CIF-State Cross Country Championships Division II title last November: